For concert goers (who, let’s face it, is essentially our entire readership so you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about) there are those rare and elusive nights that I like to call “Music Magic.” The fans know it; the band knows it; and as you’re leaving you can hear everyone in the audience saying a variation of the same thing: “That was unbelievable!” On August 31st at Cowboy’s Ranch in London, Ontario The Cadillac Three made music magic.
The fact that the concert even happened is a miracle in and of itself. Lead singer Jaren Johnston was in Knoxville, Tennessee at 3:00 p.m. for his much loved grandmother-in-law’s funeral the day of the concert. Rather than cancel the show, Jaren vowed to join his bandmates Neil Mason and Kelby Ray in time to perform for his first Canadian headlining gig. The venue was able to pull some local talent, Ryan Bradley, to perform ahead of the opener, Them Dang Rattlers, to help fill the time and fans were completely unaware of the reasons for the delay. At 11:30 The Cadillac Three hit the stage and fans greeted the band with the same joy and enthusiasm as if they had started on time. There was no restlessness – only gratitude. It wasn’t until the third or fourth song that Jaren explained the reason for his delay and dedicated “Down to the River” in memory of a great lady who was “Always sweet” to him. He raised his glass subtly to Grandma Marjean and then the band belted out a heart felt performance of the song in her memory.
The band may be called The Cadillac Three, but the sound that comes out of these guys sounds like there’s 30 of them on stage. I have seen this uber talented trio perform on a couple of occasions but Aug 31st was something really special. With a handful of new tunes off the recently released Bury Me In My Boots, the one that grabbed me most was their performance of Runnin’ Red Lights. Having heard the guys perform this for us 7 months back on the tour bus for a Mason Jar Session and then hearing it live in front of a crowd of TC3 faithful was incredible. When we talk about TC3 faithful even the Canadian boarder security folk are fans. Jaren mentioned that when he was crossing the border in Sarnia the border security officer said “Cadillac Three? I’m a fan. Right this way, sir”, further proof that us Canadians have some pretty sweet taste in music.
If you don’t have the new album yet I strongly suggest you grab it (check out my review of the album here). There isn’t a bad song on it. Our fingers are crossed that the fellas decide to spend a bit more time North of the border in 2017. And after seeing a set like that they are deserving of a solid time slot on a Boots and Hearts Kick off party stage. Just Sayin’.
Corey Kelly / @CoreyKelly76